Day of the Dead pillowcase

Day of the Dead Pillowcases

DIy Day of the Dead pillowcases

Happy National Sewing Month!

Wow, the pressure to be the one to kick off this party! My advice? Just sew! Whether you are a newbie or a pro, celebrate National Sewing Month by learning something new or starting a sewing circle with your friends. Maybe you can sew headbands to sell or sew quilts to give to charity. JUST SEW.

And then pick out your favorite items and enter it in the contest!

About my project – in case you didn’t know, JoAnn Stores have a nice selection of muertos themed prints. I buy them all the time for everything from purses to potholders. This time I used them to make these fabric collage Day of the Dead Pillowcases! They are great to dress up your bedding, to use for guests or to give as gifts.

NOTE: I followed a really great video tutorial HERE, in case my directions aren’t clear.

Day of the Dead Pillowcase

Supplies for one standard size pillowcase:

These are the fabrics I bought, 1/2 yard of each. I made two pillowcases and had PLENTY leftover to make more.

BODY: 1 piece of fabric that measures 28″ x 42″ – keep in mind, for a collage, you can use various fabrics. I actually bought 1/2 yard each eight different fabrics for this project. Out of that, I made two pillowcases, and had plenty leftover for another.

CUFF: 1 piece that measures 9-1/2′ x 42″ – my suggestion is to use one fabric design for the cuff.

ACCENT TRIM: 1 piece that measures 2″ x 42″ – one pattern design.

RICKRACK; 42″, jumbo size


Straight pins


Day of the Dead pillowcase

Cut up your fabric in modular pieces to make up the 28″ x 42″ body. Sew them together two at a tim,then unite them all. To make it easier, I created two fabric collage panels that were 28″ x 21″ and sewed the two pieces together to make one large piece. Make sure to iron your seams! If you plan to use and wash your pillowcase a lot, you’ll want to sew on a liner on the back to hide all the raw edges. Just use light cotton fabric.

pillowcase accent

Get your accent trim ready. Take the 2″ strip and fold it in half and press. Then sew on the rickrack over the folded area.


Now its time to put it all together! Place the cuff fabric right side up on a table. Now set the body piece, right side up on top, line up the edges. Now place the accent trim, right side up on top of that. Line up all of the edges at the top, pin to keep them in place.

OK, this part is a bit tricky, but it is genius, I learned it from the video! Take the bottom of the body piece and roll it up tight all the way up, but not touching the accent trim. Now you’ll see the cuff fabric piece on the table. Pick up the bottom raw edge of that cuff fabric and bring it up over the body piece and line it up with the other tops and re-pin all those four layers along the top. Make sure not to pin the rolled up body portion!

Then sew a straight line down, 1/4″ seam.


Look, it’s like magic! Now pull out the body portion from one end. You’ll see the cuff is in place, and the trim. All that’s left to do is sew  up the sides!


Press the cuff so you have a nice crease. Now, with the right sides out you want to create a strong double seam. To do that, you’ll need to sew a 1/4″ seam all the way around the edges, but not the cuff area.


Turn the pillow case inside out and sew a TINY bit more than 1/4″ all the way around to hide your other seam. Make sure to backstitch the ends. Cut any loose threads.

Day of the dead pillowcase

And there you go! It’s done! I really love fabric collage projects because it’s a great way to mix and match all your favorite fabrics. Look for a color story and then ways to contrast. To make it easier, look for fabric patterns that work up and down so you don’t have to worry about sewing anything upside down. If you want, you can use just three fabrics for the body, cuff and trim, but I think life is too short to do that. Go for the collage, it’s more interesting to the eye and will exercise your color/pattern-matching muscles!

Love & light,

6 Responses

  1. Love these Kathy! I’ll have to enter the contest. I make lots of things using quilting fabric. Alex has some picked out for a bag.

  2. Oh, gosh, never mind, just read more thoroughly to see that you mentioned JoAnn Fabric stores! Thanks 😀

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Kathy Cano-Murillo

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Hi, I’m Kathy, The Crafty Chica! My specialty is creative motivation. I’m an artist, author, and speaker and this is where I share my craft tutorials, artwork, articles, books, product lines, and workshops!

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